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Biting The Technology Bullet For Better Homecare

The
world has changed rapidly in the last over two decades, thanks to
technology advancements. Enterprises across the globe – big or
small – are making the best use of IT resources to achieve scale,
gain operational proficiency and bend cost curve.

The
world has changed rapidly in the last over two decades, thanks to
technology advancements. Enterprises across the globe – big or
small – are making the best use of IT resources to achieve scale,
gain operational proficiency and bend cost curve.

Healthcare
companies too have been leveraging the IT boom to innovate diagnostic
and treatment procedures, and fine-tune the delivery processes. New
and unique concepts are being introduced everyday, with healthcare
companies making technological strides by cashing in on internet and
cellular technologies, with the sole aim to make patient care more
personalized.

In
India, the concept of technology-enabled at-home healthcare services
is gaining ground. Indian healthcare companies are adopting this
clinically proven model of the West, to offer customised,
cost-effective and convenient treatment solutions to patients in the
comfortable confines of home. It, undoubtedly, has the potential to
transform India’s healthcare environment, without disturbing the
existing framework.

As
per a 2012 report by McKinsey and CII, India’s hospital bed density
(per 1000) stood at 1.3 in 2010, against the World Health
Organization’s standard of 3.5
.
Besides, availability of doctors in the country is even more
alarming.
As
per the recent WHO data, India has six doctors per 10,000 people as
compared to the world average of 15 doctors per 10,000 people. Going
by the numbers, healthcare situation in India is grim and
technology-enabled homecare services can help ease the chaos
by
augmenting existing healthcare infrastructure and increasing the
outreach of hospitals and doctors.

For
the model to be successful, the key is right mix of technology and
high standard of clinical expertise. By virtue of being a JV between
Burman family (promoters of Dabur) and
founders of Healthcare at Home, UK, clinical competence is in HCAH’s
DNA.
We have been investing
heavily on ramping up technology, and constantly upgrading our
technological capabilities to live up to the patients’ and our
stakeholders’ expectations. IT infrastructure is the backbone of
Health Care at Home as all the verticals are revolving around it to
function independently and also inter-dependently.

IT-enabled
Patient Care System: Backbone of
Health
Care at Home

We
have a robust IT platform, namely Patient Care System (PCS), in
place. There has been enough evidence that manual tasks are not
scalable and lead to invariably high costs. Whereas, automated,
technologically-driven processes are far more efficient and cut
various costs which can then effectively be passed on to consumers.
The in-house software, which integrates all the systems like finance,
marketing, operations, customers, billing etc, makes us realize that
aim, besides increasing hospitals and clinicians reach

All
our services at
HCAH
are doctor-driven and evidence-based. The gamut of services HCAH
provides, including home oncology (cancer care), home critical care,
supportive ICU at home, to more specialty care like Non Invasive
Ventilation (NIV), bed sore care, among others, are all provided
under the strict screening of the treating doctors. The consulting
clinicians do not visit patients, but are updated constantly by
HCAH’s healthcare professionals.

All
our healthcare providers carry tablet devices with our in-house
technology platform loaded on it. With the help of the high-end IT
platform, the homecare provider ensures that every minute detail is
provided to the treating clinician so that precise and appropriate
treatment could be undertaken.

To
ensure that the link between the doctor and the healthcare providers
is not broken and there is
seamless
and glitch-free
flow of information, our
IT professionals at the back-end are working round-the-clock to make
processes more efficient and conducive for homecare scenario.

Backed
by sophisticated IT platform, HCAH is pioneering in the field of
homecare services, thereby ensuring that patients are under the
observation of their doctors without having to visit them. While it
offers patients convenience and flexibility to receive treatment at
home under the able guidance of their doctors, the clinicians and
hospitals also get unburdened in the process.

Healthcare
gets hi-tech –Technology taking the lead to improve processes

Operations:
Our
comprehensive clinical assessment process is completely digitized.
The process begins with assigning a health provider to a patient to
finally sending the report to the family and doctor of the patient.
HCAH’s Patient Care System keeps record of who is being assigned to
whom, their patient visit timelines, medical assessment to minutest
things as to what time the processes started and how much time did
they take. Such “start to finish detailing” increases
accountability in the system. An impeccable in-house IT framework
ensures error-free recording of patients’ details, which helps in
accurate clinical analysis of their condition.

Communication:
Technology helps
us to communicate better and faster with the patient and their
clinicians. Regular e-mailers, SMSes are sent to family of the
patient and their doctors to keep them posted about the treatment
procedure being followed. Our rapid and reliable home care technology
helps in guiding decisions and taking timely interventions. Post
treatment, final reports are sent both to the doctor and family
members, clearly communicating everything in detail.

Reporting:
The company has
adopted
green
procedures” by going paperless, to a large extent.The medical
reports of the patients are also electronic, allowing the doctors to
check the progress of their patient on visit-to-visit basis. The data
that churns out includes graphical snapshots which makes it easier
for the doctors to decipher their patients’ condition. The
comprehensive and detailed real-time updates can be shared by the
doctors from anywhere, anytime, making them to take quick actions and
avoid delays. Paperless and portable medical records lead to accurate
diagnosis, cut costs and add value to patient care.

Data
analytics:
Organizations
typically have multiple systems and information is scattered across
various databases.
HCAH,
all the data is accumulated in a single database. From an
organization perspective, the structure helps to gain better insight
including into operational, financial, marketing and patient
treatments, by decoding the entire data and not miss something in
spillovers, thus have a competitive edge. It is equally helpful for
patients as it results in creating complete patient history, with
exact timelines, which can be shared with the doctor, presenting him
with a complete picture of patient’s condition. This also leads to
cutting down on unnecessary tests and treatments, thus reducing
costs.

Data
on cloud:
By
keeping all the data on cloud, we have made it feasible for any
stakeholder to access it, from anywhere and anytime. Having the
choice to view data unobtrusively, timely response becomes easy as
also the system becomes transparent and cost-effective. The company
in a few years will have a pan-India presence and we would be present
in the remote corners of the country. Accessibility to cloud from
those locations helps in making data available on a real time basis.
With a highly reliable and robust cloud infrastructure HCAH has
almost 100% uptime and the platform can be scaled up rapidly to
facilitate business growth.

Enterprise
mobility/connectivity:
Enterprises
have moved beyond regular nine to six routines, engaging workforce
even on-the-go so that work goes on uninterrupted. Our centralised
PCS can be accessed from the website with the help of even tablet and
mobile devices, enhancing employees participation and containing the
need for location-based work. Availability of data on cloud helps to
serve the purpose better. Besides, with the company ready to spread
wings to different territories, connectivity is desirable to maintain
cohesiveness.

Employee
and patient safety:
Technology
also plays an important role to ensure safety of our employees and
patients. All our cabs and tablet devices are GPS-enabled and
tracking takes place on a real-time basis. The operations department
goes through a checklist, satisfying safety requirements for a
healthcare professional before assigning him/her for at-home visit.
Likewise, patients are kept abreast about every minute detail of the
visit and information shared about the healthcare professional via
e-mails and SMSes. This builds confidence on both sides. At
organisational level, this is of paramount importance.

Homecare
has a long way to go in India. Using technology appropriately can
help expand its horizons beyond imagination. As aptly put by science
visionary Sir Arthur C Clarke – “Any sufficiently advanced
technology is equivalent to magic”. We are aiming to tap that
potential of technology at
HCAH,
looking to offer patient care solutions to our customers which would
be truly magical.

 

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